I live in Massachusetts, zone 6a. A month ago I found a plant in my yard, which my friend identified as a perennial shrub called Hellebore. It has pastel green and pink flowers on stems gently bent over in such a way that almost only the backs are visible. I picked one, which is shown in the picture below. A few days ago I checked, and found that the Hellebore has grown significantly, and most of the flowers now have pods filled with small white seeds.

Is it too late in the season to plant the seeds somewhere else in the yard? If so, are they ready to be harvested now, or should I wait for something to happen to the pods, such as drying out, splitting or falling on their own? Also, since there are so many seeds, can I also store some for the winter, using the same method as my annual flower seeds?

Update: After having read @Stormy's answer, I think I'll try to cultivate a new one vegetatively. The current plant is in a mostly shady area. Is that an important consideration in choosing a location for the new one?

click on pictures for full size

1 Answer 1


Go ahead and save seeds...but I'd be more inclined to make sure this plant is healthy and I'd propogate vegetatively and not worry about seeds. Is this helebore self-fertilizing? Otherwise, I'd start seeds in a controlled environment to see if they are viable...helebores are incredible plants. Grown vegetatively very easily.

  • It seems very healthy, and I love it! Does self-fertilizing mean it needs no mate? If so, it must be, because it's the only one I've seen in the yard. I'd rather not bother with the seeds if the other way's easier. I'm editing the question to ask one more quick thing. Maybe you could edit your answer if you don't mind. Thanks :) Jul 11, 2015 at 21:57
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    Helebores love partial shade. If you are going to propagate vegetatively, I'd get some 'Root Tone', rooting hormone (I prefer the powder versus the goo), use sterilized potting soil and start a youngish leaf and petiole in a very small, no larger than 3" wide pot. Moisten and cover with plastic. Keep in a warm area but out of direct sunlight. Water only when it starts to dry out, keep soil moist, not soggy. Upgrade one more time to a 4 - 6" pot with potting soil and once rooted well in that pot, if acclimated to the outdoors, plant in garden with partial shade.
    – stormy
    Jul 12, 2015 at 19:29

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